Tag Archives: tourist

Get the best out of England this autumn

Autumn leaves in the park

Nothing beats the feeling of an English autumn: the changing colours, the crisp clean air and the crunch of leaves underfoot. Here are four autumn activities to make the most of.

See woodland wildlife in Hampshire

Hear pigs snuffle through the forest hunting for acorns, see skewbald ponies rounded up for the season’s pony sales and watch buck deer rutting, clashing antlers and barking in a battle for supremacy.

Autumn is the perfect time to visit the New Forest. Go for a ride to see the mists roll in over the heaths, spot funghi springing up in the woodlands and walk along the river from the beautiful village of Beaulieu to the quaint hamlet of Bucklers Hard.

Discover places to stay in Hampshire

Conker games in Northamptonshire

Join the thousands who flock to the ancient market town of Oundle in Northamptonshire for the World Conker Championships. Competitors battle it out on eight white podiums in an arena and the victor progresses to the Conker Throne, where he or she is crowned with conkers.

Northamptonshire is dotted with chocolate-box villages of quaint cottages with Tudor timbers and thatched roofs. Visit the county’s impressive collection of splendid mansions, including the ancestral homes of George Washington at Sulgrave Manor and Princess Diana at Althorp House.

Find a home from home in Northamptonshire

Apple orchard tours in Somerset

Explore the orchards of Somerset’s famous cider farms like Burrow Hill or Wilkins, taking in the rows of fruit-laden trees and pausing to taste the local ciders straight from the barrel.

The rolling limestone hills of Mendip and the alluring Quantocks are especially lovely in the autumn. Nearby, you can walk down Europe’s oldest complete medieval street and visit the Bishop’s Palace at Wells. You’ll see Glastonbury Tor soar from the flat landscape of the Somerset Levels to an impressive 158 metres.

Choose a Somerset holiday this autumn

Leaf-peeping in Gloucestershire

Autumn arrives with a bang at Westonbirt, the National Arboretum in Tetbury. Here you’ll find 341 varieties of Japanese maple, famous for their blaze of reds, oranges and yellows. You can follow one of the seasonal trails here or join a tree-discovering event.

Don’t miss Gloucester’s magnificent Gothic cathedral – you’ll probably recognise it as the one in Harry Potter and Dr Who. If you find yourself further west on the other side of the River Severn, you might like to stroll through the Forest of Dean and absorb its dramatic hills, curving roads and unspoilt views.

Find a place to stay in Gloucestershire

Sunny Spain’s a hit with tourists

Book a sunny stay at Relax Bungalow, Gran Canaria

Owners of Spanish holiday accommodation will be pleased to hear that a massive 57.6 million foreign tourists holidayed in Spain between January and November in 2013.

According to the Ministry of Industry, Energy and Tourism, these are the highest numbers yet, with the Canary Islands and Catalonia proving particularly popular.

As we reported last year, tourist spending in Spain was already up by 13.7% by March 2013. The Ministry now reports a marked increase in visits from Russian and Nordic tourists, but British, German and French visitors still lead the way when it comes to booking sun-baked holidays in Spain.

The rise in international visitors is being attributed to several factors. Many travellers seem to have chosen the safety of a Spanish break over more unstable sunny destinations, such as Egypt. And hoteliers and holiday home owners have also implemented reductions in their accommodation prices, which, alongside Spain’s fantastic weather and many other charms, have pulled in more business.

Spain’s not the only market on the up, either. Tourism Review reported a 55% rise in European visitors to Italy over the Christmas period and Travel Weekly reported a bumper 2013 summer for UK tourism. You can read more about Spain’s tourism growth on Euro Weekly News.

Did you notice an increase in visitors from any particular countries in 2013? And how are bookings going for 2014 so far? Tell us in a comment below and don’t forget to add your Home ID!

Gain rave reviews from your theatre-going guests

Tourists love the theatre

Good news for owners whose property is near a theatre: new statistics reveal that experiencing the glitz and glamour of a musical or a play is one of the most popular activities for overseas tourists to the UK.

According to VisitBritain, 24% of overseas holiday visitors who stay in London go to the theatre during their break – meaning that over 2 million international tourists have enjoyed a show in the capital over the last year. Musicals, such as Wicked and The Lion King, are proving particularly popular.

And it’s not just London’s theatres that are welcoming overseas tourists – 14% of all international holiday trips to the UK include a trip to see a show, with the West Midlands and North West regions of the UK performing especially strongly.

Help your guests enjoy a trip to the theatre

Making it as easy as possible for your guests to enjoy a trip to the theatre could be a great way of showing you’ve gone the extra mile, leading to positive reviews for your holiday home. Here are some of our ideas, but if you’ve got any of your own we’d love to hear them!

  • If your property is close to a well-known theatre, mention it in your home description on your ad.
  • Include a copy of the local theatre’s listings in your welcome pack. If your property is within easy access of London, include a guide for the capital’s theatres as well.
  • Some of the most popular shows and musicals sell out in advance, particularly in London. You could provide details of where guests can find last minute tickets or even let them know about upcoming shows before they arrive so they can buy their tickets before they sell out.
  • There are often discounts available for theatre tickets – National Rail offers 2 for 1 theatre tickets when travelling into the capital by train, for example. Find out if there are any discounts relevant for the theatres near you and mention them in your welcome pack.
  • Many restaurants offer discounted ‘pre-show’ set menus. Let your guests know about any good restaurants offering deals like this in your area.

Published: 8 November 2013